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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Massachusetts/New Hampshire
    Posts
    6

    Default State by State Driving Laws

    Hello... I posted a while back about plans for a 48 state trip this May. Most of it is planned so now I'm just looking into some details. I'm from MA where I'm allowed to talk on the phone and eat while driving. A friend from CT said that's not the case there and in NY there's laws about passing on the right on the highway. So what I'm wondering is if anyone here knows of a collective list of driving laws out there on the Internet somewhere? Would be helpful! Thanks.
    Last edited by Mark Sedenquist; 02-06-2013 at 09:06 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    No matter what state you are in, you should not talk on the phone without a handsfree device unless you pull over and stop. I anticipate that this will eventually become a nationwide law.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Tucson, AZ
    Posts
    9,358

    Default The Same is True of Most Laws

    As glc pointed out, driving while on the phone, eating, or engaging in other distracting activities are never a good idea, no matter what the legislature of a particular state has gotten around to outlawing. The same holds true for passing on the right, relying on radar detectors, being 'just 5 miles' over the speed limit and any number of other unsafe practices. If you simply drive as safely, defensively, and sanely as possible you should not run afoul of the law anywhere. If you are worried that an activity might be illegal, then why do it?

    AZBuck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Massachusetts/New Hampshire
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Right... must just be used to my Boston ways of life.
    I just anticipated possibly needing to eat at some point during the trip without pulling over.
    Thanks.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Time for a break!

    Jennifer, when you feel a need to eat, that should also be a signal to you that you need a break. Use these moments to stretch your legs, fill your tummy, refocus yourself, and generally, get back in the vehicle refreshed. It need not be much more than 10 mins.

    Follow the advice above, and you will have an enjoyable journey.

    Lifey
    Last edited by Lifemagician; 02-07-2013 at 05:30 AM. Reason: typo

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,748

    Default Agreed.

    Whereas I agree with all the above, which is really good advice that should be followed, in answer to your question you might want to take a look here.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Joplin MO
    Posts
    9,270

    Default

    Sometimes you have to pass on the right. There are too many inconsiderate drivers out there who plant their butts in the left lane and won't move over for anything. Most cops understand that and won't enforce that particular law. In fact, some of the worst left lane hogs happen to be from NY.

    Now - that's passing on the right on a multi-lane highway. Using the shoulder to pass a stopped car waiting to turn left on a single lane road is legal in some states, illegal in others, and those are enforced. U-turn laws are also inconsistent.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Inconsistencies.

    As are some turns. In NJ I was stopped for having done an illegal left hand turn. I did not know what he was talking about, and when he saw my driver's licence explained a local law where left turns are made from the right hand lane. I had not noticed the sign, though I had seen some a few miles back.

    But those should not be a great concern to you if you are focusing on safe driving at all times. Most officers who stop you will understand when they see you are from out of State.

    Lifey

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia
    Posts
    6,936

    Default Wow!!

    Dave, that is a great link. I have never seen that before. Shall make good use of it. Has a lot of valuable info there.

    Lifey

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JenniferB View Post
    Right... must just be used to my Boston ways of life.
    I just anticipated possibly needing to eat at some point during the trip without pulling over.
    Thanks.
    I think your friend who told you it was illegal to eat and drive in CT was mistaken. I'm not aware of any state that bans eating while driving - and the link Dave provided seems to confirm that - although it might be prohibited by local laws in some areas.

    Of course, the more important thing is that pretty much every state does have a law banning distracted or inattentive driving that really is a catch-all for eating, texting, reading, putting on makeup, or anything else that is keeping your attention from the roadway.

    You're very unlikely to get pulled over for eating a burger while driving, in fact, it's even tough for cops in most states to enforce a texting while driving ban, but if doing so leads to bad driving, a cop who notices can pull you over and give you a ticket, even if there is no law banning the specific behavior.

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